on 2 May 2006
If I seem to have been forgiving with the rating for this film, that's because I believe its heart is in absolutely the right place. This is a super-faithful - almost to a fault - screen adaptation of Martin Amis's (excellent) second novel. But its primary failing is its staginess: dialogue (even good dialogue like this) from a novel rarely translates well to the screen without the interjection of a screenwriter's vision (never mind that Amis has tried his hand at screenplays). Thus does this strange film trip and stumble onto our screens, and without the motive of deep interest or plain old macarbre curiosity the average viewer might be forgiven for switching off in incredulity after the first few scenes. At the start of the feature Cristian Solimino's delivery as Andy Adorno gives special cause for alarm, although he eventually settles into the part rather well, only tripping up over such incredulously swapped lines as "How was the book received?" (originally attributed to Quentin in the novel and with good reason). Olivia Williams as Diana lends some gravitas to the procedings even if she does seem a little bemused by the company at times, but it is Paul Bettany who really impresses, I feel, playing elegant Quentin Villiers with apparent relish and dramatic surity. But let's not forget Andy Nyman as little Keith, who pulls off the almost impossible stunt of actually resembling that grotesque character; he also gives us the biggest laughs of the film. The rest of the cast cope variously well with the sometimes stodgy script and mannered direction (this is apparently actor William Marsh's first and thus far last expedition to the other side of the lens) to bring us a grotesque and bizarre black comedy that one can't help feel would have been so much better with rather more assured direction and an actual screenplay rather than a direct scene-for-scene reading of the book. But I tend to remember the mood I experienced when I watch a film, and this one swung my mood in the right direction. If you're not an avid Amis fan like me, however, you might want to subtract one from the rating.
on 2 January 2014
Dead Babies is wild,wacky,wrong and oddly addictive.It's amazing imagery and creative directing really shows through. If you want gore,horror,dark comedic tones and a bit of nudity all tied up in a drug endorsed scenario then you've come to the right place.I genuinely give this film 5*'s for its Originality
on 3 April 2009
Dead Babies is a faithful and impressive adaptation of the Martin Amis book of the same name with some creative casting (Kris Marshall as Skip!) producing an engaging film.
It would probably help the viewer to have first read the book as the film does occasionally move at breakneck speed but the characters and scenes are so well defined (apart from perhaps Giles) that it is clear what is going on.
I bought the film out of curiosity after reading the book and wasn't expecting the result to be of any quality but was pleasantly surprised. If you've read the book, this film is well worth a look.